2 High School Students May Have Solved The Most Annoying Thing About Sauce Bottles

US high school seniors Tyler Richards and Jonathan Thompson really like ketchup.

So much so that when they started a year-long program through Project Lead the Way program at their Kansas City high school, they knew they wanted to focus on the biggest problem with ketchup — the watery discharge that can ruin a great burger or hot dog bun (via Grub Street).

“Wet bread’s gross,” Thompson explained simply to KCPT.

The two students said they spent a week sketching out solutions to the problem, and eventually landed on a model that is based on the Pythagorean cup idea (the same principle behind the toilet).

The final prototype, which they 3-D printed, looks like a regular cap from the customer’s perspective. But the inside resembles an upside-down mushroom that traps water from escaping the bottle.

“Basically kind of what’s happening is that there is no way the ketchup can go through [the regular end of the cap],” Richards explained to KCPT. “So [the pressure] pushes the ketchup up and over and through the tube, whereas the water will be sitting at the bottom.”

The students said market research indicates that the mushroom cap could be made for about 23 cents and that consumers might be willing to pay up to $US3 for the solution.

“It’s mostly just been kind of fun because there aren’t many classes where you can just do a year-long project on ketchup,” Richards said.

Watch a video of the pair describing their project below.

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